Anatomy and Physiology POST

Anatomy and Physiology POST - The Anatomy and Physiology of...

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The Anatomy and Physiology of Personality PSYC 352 Summer II, 2009
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Agenda Early physiological approaches to personality Physiological measures of interest Brain structure and personality: Prominent theories Neurotransmitters and hormones
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Instructional Objectives By the end of this lesson, students will be able to: Briefly describe the earliest physiological approach to personality Identify physiological measures of interest to personality psychologists, and describe how they are commonly measured Provide an overview of common methods for measuring brain activity Describe hypothesized effects of the frontal cortex, the amygdala and the ARAS on various aspects of personality Describe the effects that dopamine, serotonin, norepinephrine, testosterone, and cortisol are believed to have on personality Discuss the hypothesized influence of circadian rhythms on personality
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Question How much of personality can be explained by the brain and biological processes? Reductionist position: 100% Humanist position: 0%
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First physiological approach to personality Galen c. 170 AD – “bodily fluid theory of personality” An imbalance in any of four bodily fluids would affect observed personality Phlegm “phlegmatic” Blood “sanguine” Yellow bile “choleric” Black bile “melancholic”
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Physiological Approach to Personality Advantage: physiological characteristics can be measured objectively Often physiologically oriented personality psychologists research whether physiological and psychological responses to a condition are related to personality traits
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Example Do shy people experience more anxiety than non- shy people when asked to perform a difficult task in front of an audience? What’s the condition? The personality trait? The psychological response? Ideas for a physiological response?
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Physiological measures Sweating (skin conductance/electrical activity) Blood pressure Heart rate Cardiovascular reactivity Brain activity
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Two approaches to studying the effects of the brain on personality 1. Structure of the brain – examine the effects of various parts of the brain on personality functioning 2. Chemicals – examine the effects of neurotransmitters on personality functioning
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This note was uploaded on 09/04/2009 for the course PSYC 352 taught by Professor Mehl during the Summer '09 term at University of Arizona- Tucson.

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Anatomy and Physiology POST - The Anatomy and Physiology of...

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